If you consider yourself an environmentally conscious person, the holiday season might be a tough time of year for you. So much paper is thrown away from gift wrappings and bags, people cut down perfectly good trees to use as living room decor for only a few weeks, and the cheap plastic ornaments that filled people's shopping carts in the beginning of December end up in the trash. Instead of compromising your environmentally friendly ideals and going along with the rampant consumerism that marks this time of year, there are actually a lot of ways you can help make your Christmas celebration greener. One such way to do so is with eco-friendly Christmas decorations.
Reusable Glass Bulbs
Reusable glass bulbs are actually a very environmentally responsible Christmas decor choice. These glass bulbs can be used over and over again for decades, often becoming treasured family heirlooms. Not to mention that many of these bulbs are composed of all natural glass with no fillers or additives. The production of glass is better for the environment than plastic. Reusable glass bulbs can be purchased at most department stores, discount stores, and holiday stores. Artisan glass ornaments are also environmentally friendly Christmas decorations and may be found online or for sale at a local art gallery.
Instead of using traditional tinsel garland, which gets tossed out every year and is far from easily biodegradable, you can make a simple garland out of newspaper. You can use this garland to decorate your tree or other areas of your home. Simply cut old newspaper into strips, take a strip and glue it into a loop shape, then glue another strip into an intertwining loop until you are satisfied with the length of your garland. Old magazines and phonebooks also work great for this DIY project. To add a bit of festive color to the garland, paint the newspaper strips with non-toxic acrylic or watercolor paint and let them dry before looping them. If you have a family, this is a great craft to do with children.
Pine Cone Decor
Pine cones are frequently used to decorate homes around the holidays. Many people will actually go to a store to buy pine cones, spending their hard-earned cash on processed and preserved pine cones. However, it is friendlier for your wallet and the environment to collect pine cones from outside to use in your holiday decor. Serving as all-natural decorative pieces, you can use pine cones to create wreathes, ornaments, centerpieces, and much more this holiday season. After you are done with them, simply add them to your compost heap where they will start to degrade.
Gift bags are a fantastic alternative to wrapping paper. Gift bags may be reused for several years before they start to wear out, in comparison to the one-time use of wrapping paper. Plus, did you know you can actually use gift bags as Christmas decorations? To do this, take some old gift bags then stuff them with crinkled up old newspapers to create a filling. The crumpled newspaper should fill the bag up to about one to two inches below the opening of the bag. On top of the crumpled newspaper, add in decorative items like pine cones, reusable silk flowers, candy canes, stuffed animals, Christmas ornaments, or whatever you find to be visually pleasing. These look great lining plant shelves, empty counter space, or filling unused corners. The bags can be reused as eco-friendly holiday decorations year after year, or they may also be used to hold gifts. In order to be as green as possible, please ensure that you use recycled, upcycled, or reusable items to fill each bag. Gift bags and reusable decorative items are very affordable and can be found at most value retailers and dollar stores.